Before the House Hunt: 3 Things to Ask When Writing Your Home Buying Checklist

couple talking to a real estate agent

Before you go shop at the property market for your next home, there’s one important step you should do first: come up with a needs and wants checklist. In fact, ideally, you want to have this tool way before you go down the rabbit hole of online listings. Simply because you don’t want to fall in love hard with pretty houses that don’t exactly meet your requirements. Aside from avoiding emotional buys and narrowing down your options right from the start, the checklist will also help making quick, yet confident decisions when the right house comes. To help you with your list, here are some questions to ask yourself or with your spouse:

What do I love about my home now?

Take inventory of the perks that you enjoy in your current house. Perhaps you love its open-concept layout because you can easily see what your little ones are up to when you’re in the kitchen cooking. Or maybe the single-storey structure is what you like the most, as it keeps your in-laws mobile and safe around the house. With your current living arrangements as a mental note, you can easily list down some of your needs and wants. It’s best if you and your partner can do separate lists, so you can evaluate and discuss better later. Aside from the actual house though, ask yourself what you like about the neighbourhood, too. Is it the fact that it’s peaceful and quiet? Or that there are kids running freely during the weekends? This will help you concretise the ideal community you want to be in.

What do I want to change in this house?

Instead of looking at Pinterest or HGTV houses and say, ‘I need that kind of flooring,’ ‘I want that accent wall,’ see what you’ll change in your current home if given the chance. This way, you can easily avoid unnecessary splurges and stick to only what your lifestyle requires. Do this thinking exercise one room at a time to keep your list organised.

For instance, in the kitchen-dining area, you probably feel the need to have a bigger space than you have now because, in the last years, you’ve grown fonder of hosting dinner parties for friends and families. Of course, don’t forget to evaluate your neighbourhood. What is it that you would like to change in it? Would you want it to be family-friendlier? Perhaps closer to the commercial hub and public transportation? If these are your priorities, you probably want to check out Townsville real estates for sale. These are often located in a close-knit community, accessible to key establishments.

Where can I compromise and where can’t I?

couple looking at house plansNow that you’ve come up with a rough sketch of your wants and needs, it’s time to go over it again and filter it out. The truth is, some of the needs you listed down are probably wants in disguise. You need to be honest with yourself in evaluating each item. At the same time, there are needs that can never be wants. In other words, there are non-negotiables. You need to be firm in holding on to these essentials. Generally, you don’t want to compromise on the location, the budget, and the layout of the home. Otherwise, it will significantly change your lifestyle and create an uncomfortable tension in your family.

Again, the home buying checklist is your magic tool in getting the right house. Don’t go shopping yet without that list. Sit down with your spouse and start jotting down your needs and wants.